How to Zero in on the Perfect Home to Buy

Have you ever shopped for a gift and had no idea what to buy? You may have gone from store to store hoping for inspiration, only to discover you wasted hours.
 
Obviously, if you had a clear idea of what you wanted to find, you’d find it faster. The same holds true when looking for a home. The clearer you are about the kind of home you want, the more likely you are to find it – and get it!
 
The best way to get clarity is to start big and then go small. That simply means you start by identifying the biggest thing – the area in which you want to live. What are the characteristics of the ideal neighbourhood for you? Make a list.
 
Next, go from biggest down one notch and think about the type of home you want. Size? Features? Finally, think about the inside of your next dream home. Consider the number of bedrooms, size of the kitchen or living room, and any special features you might want.
 
Have fun imagining the next perfect home for you. You may discover it’s available on the market now – or maybe it will be soon.
 
*Morris Marketing*

Getting an Early Start

You’ve probably heard the expression, “The early-bird gets the worm.” Applied to real estate, it simply means that the sooner you start working on your plans to sell your house, the more likely you are to be successful.

Say, for example, you’re thinking of selling this summer. You might think it’s too soon to start making plans, but it’s not. Starting the planning and preparation process well in advance will give you an advantage when you are ready to put your house on the market.

It will also make the process of selling your house a lot less stressful, because – to use another popular analogy – you’ll have “all your ducks in a row.”

So, if you’re planning on selling your house this year, or even just thinking about it, give me a call. I’ll explain what you need to do today to ensure your house is ready to sell quickly and for a good price.

All the best!

Benefits of Microfibre Cloth

Synthetic microfibre textiles have become a popular choice for residential and industrial cleaning. What makes them a preferred choice over common cloth or paper towel?
 
Technically speaking, their fibres are so fine, they can be woven into strands that can better penetrate miniscule cracks and creases. Many times less than the width of a human hair, microfibres can be spun with tiny branches or filaments that can capture microbial bacteria, and absorb liquid up to seven or eight times their weight.
 
In addition, microfibres can create static electricity to capture dust particles that would otherwise be stirred up into the air during dusting. Aside from their technical attributes, the availability of cloths in a range of colours provides a simple benefit. Users can designate individual colours to specific tasks, thereby reducing the risk of cross-contamination across floors, countertops, sinks and toilets.
 
*Morris Marketing*

Five Useful Household Tips

1. Try rubbing a piece of raw walnut on a light but visible scrape on the surface of a wood furnishing to provide a temporary natural lustre.
 
2. Keep track of your chosen colours by writing the paint source and code on the handle of the stir stick before tossing empty paint cans.
 
3. Clean a scorched pan by filling with boiling water to the mid-point, mixing in a few teaspoons of baking soda and allowing to cool before scrubbing.
 
4. Measure servings of cookie dough easily by coating your spoon with a layer of milk to prevent the raw dough from sticking.
 
5. Remove coffee stains from most synthetic upholstery and carpeting by repeatedly sponging the area with a clean white cloth soaked in a mixture of mild dish detergent and water, then dabbing with a clean white cloth rinsed in cold water.
 
*Morris Marketing*

4 Good Reasons to Consider Selling your Home

Why do people decide to move? Unless it’s a requirement, such as a job relocation, the research tells us that many homeowners decide to sell for one or more of the following reasons:
 
• Your home is no longer a good fit. You may have outgrown your house and need something bigger, maybe with an additional bedroom. Or, the opposite may be true. You may want to downsize into something smaller – and cash in some of the home equity you’ve built up.
 
• You’ve got your eye on a different neighbourhood. Have you ever driven through an area and thought, “I’d love to live here”? You might think that it’s out-of-reach for you at this time. But is it? You never know until you work the numbers. You might, in fact, qualify for a home in that neighbourhood today!
 
• You want to be closer to something. Many homeowners would love to live closer to work, family, favourite hobbies, downtown, the country, etc. Moving to a house that’s near to one of these “somethings” can have a positive impact on your lifestyle.
 
• It’s time for a change. Sometimes a homeowner just wants a change: new surroundings, a fresh start. Who says you need a “practical” reason to sell? If you’re looking to get into a new home just because you feel like it, that’s your choice. In fact, that may be the best reason of all to sell. You may simply want to move.
 
Do any of these reasons resonate for you? If so, now is the time to start preparing. Even if you don’t anticipate moving for several months, start the process today.
 
*Morris Marketing*

Be Prepared for Power Failures

We are all vulnerable to unexpected power disruptions, but with a few advance preparations, potential inconveniences and dangers can be avoided or at least minimized.
 
As a starting point, every home should have emergency supplies that include basics such as candles and matches, flashlight(s) and fresh batteries, a first-aid kit, and at least one large jug of fresh water.
 
Wherever possible, it is also advisable to include more extensive preparations. Consider keeping a stock of dried foods and/or canned goods, all-weather emergency blankets, waterproof clothing and footwear, as well as cash for consumables such as fuel and food supplies.
 
Anyone requiring medications should always renew them before running too low to ensure sufficient supply. Likewise, all battery-powered devices should be kept charged – including radios, computers, cell phones and mobility vehicles.
 
For some, the inconveniences of a power-outage outweigh the cost of installing a gas-powered generator. Whether you’re ready to incur that expense or simply plan to stock up on supplies, it’s always wise to take steps that will see you and your loved ones through a power failure.
 
*Morris Marketing*

How Much Can You Spend on Your Next Home?

Even if you’re not thinking about selling your home, you might be wondering how much of a new home you can afford. You might see a house for sale in a nice neighbourhood, for example, and think, “Could I get into a house like that? Is that even possible?”
 
Why not find out?
 
It only takes a few calculations to determine how much of a new home you qualify to buy. The calculation involves estimating how much you can get for your house on today’s market, taking a look at the type of home you want and determining what a house like that is currently selling for, and then taking into consideration your income, savings and other financial resources.
 
Once you put it all together, you’ll have a price range within which you can confidently shop for a new home. This exercise might surprise you. You might find out you can afford to get into a home and neighbourhood you’ve always dreamed about. It’s worth finding out!
 
*Morris Marketing*

Outdated Plumbing Supply Lines Could Cause Problems

A burst water-supply pipe can cause enormous damage to a home, so it’s wise to be aware of conditions that may trigger such a disaster.
 
For example, some plastic or aluminum plumbing systems installed in previous decades have a history of failing without warning. They have triggered class-action law suits across North America. Another type of household plumbing system that can run the risk of failure is one that links supply pipes made of different materials (e.g. lead, copper, plastic, etc.).
 
As a homeowner, you have the responsibility to ensure the infrastructure of your property is sound and well maintained. To that end, it’s a good idea to do an annual visual check of your plumbing system, from your main shut-off to each branch and every faucet, outlet or appliance connection, to ensure it is functioning reliably.
 
If you have any doubts about the integrity of your plumbing, it’s wise to arrange for an inspection by a professional who can give you a clear and objective review of your plumbing supply system.
 
*Morris Marketing*

Gaining Momentum!

Have you ever made a plan or set a goal and then, months later, realized you hadn’t made a dent in it? Ouch! That can be pretty disappointing. It’s no wonder that experts always advise you to get some momentum right away.
 
The earlier you take action on a plan or goal, the more likely you are to achieve it. If that plan or goal has anything to do with your home, I may be able to help.
 
For example, say you plan on doing a renovation this spring. You might think you have plenty of time, but the months can go by quickly. Give me a call. I may be able to recommend a reputable contractor you can talk to today to get the process started. The same holds true, of course, if you’re thinking of selling. That may be the furthest thing from your mind, but if it’s something you’re considering for some point in the coming year, the time for us to talk is now.
 
As your real estate agent, I’m here to help.
 
All the best! 416-779-8732
 
*Morris Marketing*

Know the Boundaries of your Utilities

Many condo dwellers are not aware of the details of their ownership agreement with respect to utilities such as water and electricity. However, to avoid costly oversights, it’s important to understand where responsibilities lie.
 
Generally speaking, condo corporations are like municipalities that connect street houses to water and electricity systems. In other words, once your utilities are supplied to your property boundary (i.e. your walls), you become responsible for their performance.
 
In order to manage this system, it’s important to know the location of your main shut-off valve and switch for both water and power. In the event of a leaky water pipe or an electrical short-circuit, you will need to disengage your supply before you can isolate and fix the problem. Also, if you want to upgrade plumbing or electrical fixtures in your condo, it’s up to you to ensure that new parts are compatible with the infrastructure, and that the installation is compliant with building codes.
 
*Morris Marketing*